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Good small and cheap PC laptop?


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Good small and cheap PC laptop?
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-03, 13:18

I've decided I want a small (about 10") PC laptop. Something big enough that the keyboard isn't funky, but as small and thin as possible. I'm also looking for cheap (ibook $$ or less), but decent quality and not unbearably slow. It will primarily be for desktop and web programming as well as text work.

Unfortunately, I don't know where to start. My last PC laptop was a thinkpad with butterfly keyboard, so I've been out of the loop for a while. Any suggestions/recommendations?
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2005-02-03, 14:08

Well, the Dell Inspiron 700M has a 12.1" widescreen and weighs 4.1 lbs with the built-in optical drive (no need for a docking station or Firewire optical drive). But it's also thicker than the 12" PowerBook at 1.5", so it really won't be a whole lot more mobile. That's the lightest of their mainstream line, but if you choose the small business store you can look at Latitude notebooks, the smallest of which is 3 lbs and 0.8" thick.

Of course there are options from other companies. IBM is still selling ThinkPads, and they are very nice. They tend to be expensive, though, and I don't know how much longer they'll be around since IBM has sold their computer making division. The ThinkPad X31 is under 4 lbs, also has a 12" screen, and costs something like $1700. Pretty steep.

After looking around it seems that the smallest most ultraportable notebooks get is a 12" screen. Below that and you get into some specialty notebooks, often made by Sony, which maybe have 10.4" screens. Hell, I found a "Linspire" (read: Lindows) notebook for under $1000 with a 12" screen that weighs 3 lbs. It doesn't come with an optical drive and the processor is a 1 GHz VIA Antaur (VIA is best known for motherboard chipsets, not CPUs), but it's cheap and it might just get the job done.
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-03, 14:51

I've glanced around, too, and I'm really surprised at a) how expensive these are and b) how many features they lack for the price. The sonys look nasty expensive and the Dell looks like the only viable option that I can find. I'm really not happy with the dells I have to use, and not in an apple fanboy way. Too bad I can't run windows on an ibook (please, don't mention VPC).
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hflomberg
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Denver, Colorado
 
2005-02-03, 14:57

Just out of curiosity

WHy are you here?????
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2005-02-03, 15:12

Quote:
Originally Posted by hflomberg
Just out of curiosity

WHy are you here?????


Not everyone uses Macs exclusively. A lot of people need Windows for various reasons.

Oh and this will rock your world, hflomberg... I don't even own a Mac! I have a PC I built myself!
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Brad
Selfish Heathen
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Zone of Pain
 
2005-02-03, 15:17

What? Luca, you're fired.
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-03, 15:18



Thanks for the info, Luca. So, does anyone have any experience with the Dell 700m? Is that really the only notebook with that performance, price and size?

Last edited by autodata : 2005-02-03 at 16:35.
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Random Hero
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Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-03, 17:45

A lot of people gripe about Compaq computers, but my professor and a couple other people have resently purchased them and they seem pleased (Haven't heard any negative comments).

Here's their Presario V2000 5lbs @ $850

Then there's the cheapest: M2000 which is ~$650 and is 6lbs.

Not sure what your price range is, but all but one of the models is sub-$1000 and they're not too chunky in size. Just like with any other purchase it all comes down to how much ya spend.

No awkward goodbyes. No 'still friends' bullshit. Just a couple of bruised titties and a failed relationship. I rule.
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ZogDog
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Utah
 
2005-02-04, 05:53

I can vouch for Compaq as a solid laptop manufacturer. I just sold my 15.4" X1200 series, which I loved up until the day I got my PM D1.8Ghz. I'd say check the HP/Compaqs before you look at dells, but then again, i am biased

..::| www.zogdog.com |::..
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hflomberg
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Denver, Colorado
 
2005-02-04, 09:42

JUst sort of might not the name of the forum??????
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2005-02-04, 09:57

Quote:
Originally Posted by hflomberg
JUst sort of might not the name of the forum??????
Uh... what? That doesn't make any sense.

I think what you're trying to say is what's a guy asking for PC advice doing at AppleNova? Well, you'll notice that he posted the question in "General Discussion." If he had posted it in, say, "Apple Products," then it wouldn't make any sense.
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ezkcdude
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2005-02-14, 17:12

Quote:
Originally Posted by Luca
Uh... what? That doesn't make any sense.

I think what you're trying to say is what's a guy asking for PC advice doing at AppleNova? Well, you'll notice that he posted the question in "General Discussion." If he had posted it in, say, "Apple Products," then it wouldn't make any sense.
Well, I think if you check, even the General Discussion forum should relate to Apple stuff. Maybe I'm crazy, though .

Sorry, I guess I am crazy. I forgot this is the purchasing advice forum. Well, even that should stick to Apple. Maybe the thread should have asked for comparisons between PC and Apple laptops .
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wuf
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2005-02-14, 17:44

Children children.....Play nice.....

We're all friends here....Well.....Except for those who aren't.....

-wuf

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IonYz
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2005-02-14, 17:47

Auto isn't asking a specific Windows question; like how to setup NetBIOS in Windows 98. He is right, most people do have to use Windows or PC products, interact with, or know others that do.

I've always liked the idea of those compact Japanese laptops (Dynamism comes to mind, sp?) but the prices! Oy. The 12" PowerBook is actually the smallest Apple laptop, by volume and weight.

/* styling for my posts */
.intelligence {display: none;}
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-14, 18:52

I'm real tempted to get a 12" powebook or ibook, but I already have a 15" G4 powerbook, an older powerbook with bad battery and an ibook (the ibook needs to stay at home) so I can't really justify it, particularly since I'll be buying yet another 15" powerbook on the next revision (within the year) when they get a G5. Furthermore, I will need a new windows machine in the not too distant future, so I'd figure I'd kill two birds with one stone.

Why ask on applenova? Because apple users tend to have higher standards and, aside from you fanboys, there tend to be a lot of smart folks at applenova who use a variety of platforms.

The compaqs look good, but they don't appear to have anything less than a 14"

Last edited by autodata : 2005-02-14 at 18:57.
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macgeek2004
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Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2005-02-14, 18:56

There aint gonna be a G5 within the year. DEAL WITH IT.

January 2006.
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-14, 19:06

There's already a forum for getting worked up over your Speculation and Rumors. Try ranting there.
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MCQ
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2005-02-14, 19:14

Quote:
Originally Posted by macgeek2004
There aint gonna be a G5 within the year. DEAL WITH IT.

January 2006.
Says the person who less than three weeks ago was asking about an iBook G5.
http://forums.applenova.com/showthread.php?t=3658

Stop speculating... especially in GD [edit: er... purchasing advice]

Last edited by MCQ : 2005-02-14 at 19:15. Reason: There's a purchasing advice forum now?
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SDNick484
New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
 
2005-02-17, 14:53

The 700M mentioned earlier seems to fit your target fairly well and in fact it can be configured quite nicely (Pentium M 1.6GHz, 12.1" WXGA, 4.1lbs) for about 900 right now (there's a $500 off coupon here (slickdeals.net). Sony also makes some great ultraportables.
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runner91786
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
 
2005-02-18, 01:50

Get anything other than a frikin Dell, my God. Everyone thinks that they are great/not-so-great and I have seen more problems with them than anything. And that is in the hardware arena. When you have a Dell-certified technician tell you he would never buy a dell, that means something. Anyways, back to the point...there are plenty of other options such as some Acer and Averatec laptops that are well priced and sized for what you are doin. Would strongly encourage a Pentium M processor in whatever you choose. If your not so familiar, its marketing name is "Centrino" this being the combination of the Pentium M and the Intel Pro chipset. Have seen a 12" Avertatec for under $1k
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Luca
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: Minnesota
 
2005-02-18, 02:50

Speaking of Averatec... you're right, they do have a lot of lightweight, cheap laptops available. Are they pretty good? I have heard good things about Acer laptops but I've never heard of Averatec. Anyway, NewEgg has this one for $769, and it weighs 4.2 lbs. Doesn't use a Centrino, it has a Mobile Athlon XP, but that isn't bad either and it has built-in wireless like most modern, compact laptops.
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SDNick484
New Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
 
2005-02-18, 16:37

Personally I am not a huge Dell fan (I'm a Thinkpad person), however they do tend to offer the best bang for your buck (the only IBM Thinkpad in the original posters size/weight range is double the price range). My mother used a Dell for work for a year or so without any problems, and my roommate hasn't had any issues with the one he got 9 months ago. With regard to Averatec, I'd never recommend buying a laptop from a company you've never heard of; Acer does make decent notebooks. IBM, Fujitsu, Panasonic, & Sony all make respectable laptops as well. I'd stay away from eMachines, Compaq/HP (although their business line models are good), Gateway. I've heard bad things about Toshiba from my campus bookstore, but haven't had any problems with them personally.
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.Hack
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Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2005-02-18, 17:24

Quote:
Originally Posted by macgeek2004
There aint gonna be a G5 within the year. DEAL WITH IT.

January 2006.
YOU'VE FINALLY SEEN THE LIGHT!!! YES!
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.Hack
Valiant Vicks Vizier
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
 
2005-02-18, 17:25

Quote:
Originally Posted by autodata
I've decided I want a small (about 10") PC laptop. Something big enough that the keyboard isn't funky, but as small and thin as possible. I'm also looking for cheap (ibook $$ or less), but decent quality and not unbearably slow. It will primarily be for desktop and web programming as well as text work.

Unfortunately, I don't know where to start. My last PC laptop was a thinkpad with butterfly keyboard, so I've been out of the loop for a while. Any suggestions/recommendations?
look for a Dell c840, good laptop line. That line of laptops might be discontinued, but you can find some great deals on refurbs off of eBay.
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autodata
hustlin
 
Join Date: May 2004
 
2005-02-18, 18:22

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDNick484
I'm a Thinkpad person
As am I. My favorite laptop I've owned, other than the powerbook g4, was a thinkpad with a butterfly keyboard back in the late 90s. That thing was rock solid and the *perfect* size for what I'm looking for now. Unfortunately, as you pointed out, they are a little pricey for being my tertiary laptop (behind a couple powerbooks).
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